KOCHI:As the newly elected people’s representatives take oath on Thursday, the focus will shift to the chairperson candidates in the municipalities and other local bodies. In many LSG institutions, the election of chairperson has already kicked up trouble.
For instance, in North Paravur municipality where the Congress retained power, the party is facing a tug of war within that started much in advance to the run up to the elections.
Though the voters generally favoured the Congress in the municipality, the former chairperson Valsala Prasannakumar, who is also one of the KPCC general secretaries, managed to win her seat with just 4 votes. “There were attempts to destroy my political career. But I managed to win with just four votes,” Valsala said.
Though, it is highly likely that Valsala Prasannakumar would be reelected as chairperson, other factions are not sitting idle and intra-group equations in the Congress will have a big say. A section of the Congress-I group has come out demanding that the chairman post should go to a male councillor, since it is not reserved for women. The Congress has 15 members in the council while the LDF has 13 and the BJP just one. The decision on the municipal chairperson will be taken after V D Satheesan MLA, who represents the assembly constituency, returns to Paravur after the KPCC meeting at Thiruvananthapuram.
The Congress faced a setback in the newly formed Koothattukulam municipality where it badly needs the support of one independent. The KPCC decision on the the stand on rebels will be crucial for Koothattukulam where it is hoping to pacify Roy Abraham, former panchayat vice president who won from Edayar West as a rebel.
In Aluva, where the UDF secured a majority,Lissy Abraham and Jeby Mather, daughter of KPCC general secretary K M I Mather are the top contenders for the post of chairperson.
The LDF in the district is not in a hurry to finalise its chairperson candidates in the five municipalities where it got comfortable majority, said George Edapparathi, the district convenor of the front. In municipalities like Maradu, where there are no clear verdict, the front is continuing its deliberations. “we are not in a hurry, we have enough time till next Thursday,” he said.
However, LDF insiders confide that Sathi Jayakrishnan, the only woman CPM party member to be elected to the Parumbavoor Municipality, is likely to be chosen by the LDF for the post of chairperson,which is reserved for woman. In Angamali where the LDF secured comfortable majority, senior member Gracy Teacher, elected from Valavazhi ward has a bigger chance over others.
The front partner Janata Dal has staked claim for the post of vice-chairman. A final decision would be taken after Thursday’s swearing-in. In Eloor, the CPI has staked claim for the post of chairperson, a decision on which would be taken at the district level. Nevertheless, the names of C P Usha and M A James are doing rounds for the posts.